This has become my year of David Mitchell, I guess. I relied upon GoodReads reviewers to lead me to this one and the recommendation was spot-on. Once again, Mitchell left me wanting to spend a lot longer with the characters. Jason Taylor is amazing kid with a poetic mind facing too many challenges; a stammer, an intense desire to gain popularity without becoming one of the 'hairy barbarians' that determine social acceptance, estranged parents, and just general suburban living.The novel is arranged in short stories that could stand alone, but their arrangement provides a novel's arc. The tone is perfect. The author is sympathetic to his most minor characters so that all have dimension. Characters from other Mitchell novels make appearances; I'm starting to see this in other works of his and am encouraged. With any luck I'll get to meet Taylor again.This is the first author that makes me want to hit the 'Become a Fan' button.